Local News Archives

State Fire Marshal Drafts Statewide Risk Reduction Plan

Consumers Energy is reminding everyone there’s no need to struggle with heating bills this winter. The utility’s Whitney Skeans tells us there are a variety of places to turn for home heating help. Also, the utility offers payment plans in the winter. Skeans tells WSJM News another way to deal with heating your home in the winter is to take steps to reduce usage.. ...Read Full Story

How A City Income Tax Works

Now that Benton Harbor is getting its own city income tax, we thought we would check in with a couple of other Michigan cities that have municipal income taxes to see how it’s worked for them. James Freed is the city manager in Port Huron, where the income tax is also 1% for residents and 0.5% for non-residents who work in the city. He tells WSJM News collecting the tax is a simple process.. ...Read Full Story

House Bill Lets Spouses Of Disabled Veterans Keep Their License Plates

The Michigan House this week voted to allow a surviving spouse of a disabled veteran to continue to use their disabled veteran license plate. Under current law, Michigan residents with a 100% disability rating and an honorable discharge from the military are entitled to a disabled veteran plate. However, their spouses aren’t allowed to keep those plates when the veteran passes away. The new House bill would change that so the surviving spouse will be able to register the disabled veteran license plate in their name and receive one year free registration. State Representative Beth Griffin of Mattawan tells us the new bill “recognizes veterans for their courage and heroism, and the families that supported them.” The House bill now goes on to the Michigan Senate. According to the United States Census Bureau, about 3.8 million veterans in the United States had a service-connected disability in 2014.. ...Read Full Story

State Officials Experience One Night Homeless

Several state elected officials have learned what it’s like to be homeless. That’s because they spent Wednesday night pretending to be homeless as part of a challenge issued by the Michigan Coalition Against Homelessness. Spokesperson Laurel Burchfield tells WSJM News the group wanted the state’s lawmakers to better understand the issue of homelessness.. ...Read Full Story